Monday, October 17, 2011

Goal Setting

Hey y'all!!! Goal setting is HUGE at my school!! One of my amazing team members made this cute little goal setting printable that I just had to share with you {with her permission}!! It's simple and sweet. Enjoy!!!

Click on the picture to download it!!
Gobble, Gobble, Gobble!!!
Many of you have asked about when I'll have my Thanksgiving themed centers ready!! Now that I'm not writing a paper every day, I am back to my center making self!!! I hope to have my turkey themed  centers posted by the weekend!! I'm so excited about them!!!

Stay tuned for an awesome post from a guest blogger tomorrow!!! If you would like to be a guest blogger here, please feel free to e-mail me!!

Have a GREAT week!!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

FREE Technology Toys!!!

Hey Friends!! I'm SO excited to announce that I completed my Master's degree program yesterday!! I feel like a new person today...recharged, inspired, and RELIEVED!!! I want to say THANK YOU to all of the sweet guest bloggers that dropped by this week to keep things rolling over here!!! Please make sure to check out their blogs and TpT products if you haven't already!!

I attended the best technology fair ever and learned about some really amazing FREE technology resources on Friday!! I've been waiting ever since then to tell you all about it!!! Seriously, who doesn't love FREE?!?!

Are you ready?!?! This stuff is going to blow your sweet teacher heart away!!!

Random Name/Word Generator
Check out this name/word generator cuteness.  You just enter your students' names or words and it will randomly select them!! What a great way to make sure you are not calling on the same kids over and over again!!! Click here for this FREE resource!

Countdown Timer
Wanna make timing your kids FUN?!?!? Try this awesome countdown timer!! My favorite thing about it is that you can pick a soundtrack to go with your visual countdown!! I can't wait to use this with the Mission Impossible soundtrack for our clean up time tomorrow afternoon!! What would you use it for it your classroom?!?!?

Have you ever heard of Wordle?!?! Ohmyword!! Talk about word heaven!! This technology toy lets you take words from a text to make an instant word cloud!! You can copy/paste words from a document, enter a url to find words, or enter your own. I did one from the words in my lil' blog! The more the word has been used, the bigger it is in the cloud!! Cool, huh?!?! It gets better you can even customize your fonts, colors, backgrounds, etc.

If you like Wordle, you will LOVE Tagxedo!! You can actually make your word clouds in the shape of an apple, heart, star, etc!! Too cute!!

Digital Flipbook Maker
Do you use flipbooks in your classroom? You must check out ReadWriteThink's digital flipbook maker!! You can make a digital flipbook page by page and print it out!! A-MAZ-ING!!


 I about fell out of my seat when I learned about Zooburst!! You can make your own digital 3D pop up books on this site for FREE with a basic account!! Not only am I excited to use this with my kiddos, but I also can't wait to show it to Parker!!

 Comix is a place where you sweeties can actually create their own digital comic strips!! What a great activity to incorporate creativity and critical thinking in your classroom!!!

I hope you have found something in this post that you had no idea was out there in cyberland that you can use in your wonderful classroom!!!

Happy, Happy Teaching!!!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Greater Than and Less Than

Hey there friends! It's Erin and Leslie over at First Grade Fanatics. We are so excited to get to be guest bloggers for such an amazing blogger! Thanks Anna! We've really been working on greater than and less than with our little firsties, so we thought we'd share some fun stuff with ya'll.

We started over at Super Teacher Worksheets because they have a super cute little alligator that we used to introduce the concept. Isn't he the cutest?

We quickly moved beyond Mr. Alligator to teaching the symbols, but really found that using him did give the kids a great visual to remember which symbol to use.
Here is a worksheet that we used with the alligators, but you could definitely use it for just symbols as well. You can find the black and white little alligators HERE at Super Teacher Worksheets. We didn't love their worksheet, so we made our own. Make sure to grab a copy below.
The Hungry Alligator Worksheet

Next we did an activity with the kids using whiteboards where we came up with 2 numbers that they wrote, and then they picked a card with a symbol to put in the middle. Make sure to click below to get a copy of our signs. They worked really well for the kids!

We really want our first graders to be familiar with the correct language to use when comparing two numbers. The worksheets below contain boxes for students to write the correct sign in, and phrases to circle.

We ended the week teaching our kids to play this game.

This was a huge help in reinforcing greater than, less than and equal to.

Each pair of students gets a spinner to create 2-digit numbers. They then record them on their worksheet (they can either share one, or have their own) and include the appropriate symbol. They loved this game! We were so busy though, we forgot to take pictures. Oops! :-)

Here's a copy for you!

Thanks for sticking with us! Do you have any other ideas for teaching this strategy? We'd love to hear from you!
Now we're moving on to place value...

Don't forget to stop on by our blog and say hello. We've got all sorts of fun freebies and printables to share! Have a great day!

First Grade Fanatics

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Many Luscious Lollipops

Hi Dear Friends!  It’s Hope King from Second Grade Shenanigans and let me just say that I am CAH-RAZY excited  to be “guest blogging” here at Crazy for First Grade. Anna’s blog is filled with such fabulous ideas and was one of the very first blogs to inspire me to really beef up my instruction. Isn’t she awesome?!?   
Today, I am here to talk about all things delicious and tasty and scrumptious…ADJECTIVES!  I mean is there really a better month to talk about adjectives than in the month of October? How can you not cook up spicy words when talking about pumpkins, apples and all of those spooky Halloween costumes?  Lately, my budding authors have been hard at work adding a touch of adjectives here and there in their writing. One of the lessons that I look forward to the most during my little adjective unit is a lesson that I like to call “Many Luscious Lollipops.” {You’ll see the meaning behind the title in 3…2….}

Love, love, LOVE this book! It is a perfect beginning to an adjective study. However, it does get a little intense as you get close to the end. If you teach the youngsters, you may want to give it a little “preview” before your lesson and only read up until a certain point.
After reading Many Luscious Lollipops, we talk about the “Power of the Senses” and as a class, we think of ways that we can make our writing powerful by appealing to our reader’s five senses. Next, I bust out the ULTIMATE attention getter…candy…lollipops to be exact.  The students work to describe their lollipop using their five senses. {Just a little tip: I tell them they must describe taste last! I am always afraid that their lollipop will be GONE before they get one word on their paper! J}  After the activity, the students share adjectives that they used to describe their lollipop. I usually add new adjectives to our chart.
Here is the recording sheet that we use:
Finally, after the students become “adjective experts” it is time for them to become the teacher…BUT…not for other students….for their PARENTS!!! I tell the students that it is time to give their parents a little homework! {Pause for a few seconds here due to the level of excitement that will be going on in your room! You may need to alert the teacher next door that there is NOT an emergency in your room and everything is just fine! J} Seriously…the kids go absolutely crazy over the idea. That day, the students take home a parent activity that matches what they completed earlier.
We attach a Dum Dum to the sheet above and it is the parents turn to think of adjectives to describe their lollipop. I always “act” like I am just POSITIVE that the parents will need a tremendous amount of help and that I know the students are going to have to reteach them all about adjectives! They think this is hysterical and cannot WAIT to get back the next day and tell all about the adjective lesson they had with their parents.  This activity really gets them excited about including adjectives all throughout their writing. In fact, we will even have to discuss that although adjectives make our writing better, we do not actually need 25 in each sentence! J
I have put together a few adjective resources for you to use with your kiddos. You can {CLICK HERE} if you would like to download these activities.
I hope that you are all having a week filled with wonderful experiences in your classroom. Thanks again to Anna for allowing me to share this little idea with all of you! Happy Wednesday Friends!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wizard Sentences

Hi!  It's Cheryl from Primary Graffiti!  I'm as giddy as a schoolgirl for having the opportunity to post here at Crazy for First Grade.  Yep!  We've been working on similes today! This week as been a HUGE review week for my kids.  We have nouns, verbs, adjectives, similes, homophones, synonyms, and vocabulary percolating in our brains.  Words such as tantalizing, tintinnubulating are twirling off our tongues. YES, my 2nd graders are using these vocabulary words in our class and it's hilarious! I LOVE seeing how voracious my kids become for learning something new and exciting.  My young learners are developing as word wizards.   This leads me to a file that  I prepared for additional practice this week.  I'm excited to share this file with you today!  I would like to invite you to visit my blog for some fun happenings this week.  Tomorrow and Saturday will feature additional goodies for you.

Wizard Sentence

Monster Mash!!

Hey Everyone!! What a long week!!! AND it's only Tuesday!!! Don't you just love that feeling?!?!?

Let's talk monsters...I can't get enough of them right now!! My sweets are eating up the monster themed math and literacy centers I put together...I LOVE seeing them excited about learning!! Click on the picture to learn more about my Monster Mash unit!!

Here's a lil' sneak peek of everything in the packet!!
One of my favorite activities is "Monster Compare & Contrast"! It's hanging out in my HOTS (higher order thinking skills) center this week! The students use a Venn Diagram to show the similarities and differences between Monster A & B!! You can click on the picture to download it for FREE!

I know I have some Dollar Tree lovers out there!! Have you seen these FUN eyeballs?!?!?

 I wrote numbers 1-10 on two sets of eyeballs. Students pick three eyeball numbers and add them together on their recording sheet!!! Click on the picture to download the recording sheet!!
Halloween is just around the corner & I can't wait!!!
If you are looking for resources to celebrate all things trick or treating, check out my Trick or Treat unit. It's packed full of activities to get your students in the mood for Halloween while reviewing important skills!!

 Here's a sneak peek of these Halloween goodies!!!

You are in for a BIG treat this week! Please join me in welcoming several awesome guest bloggers!!
Wish me luck on Sat.!! I'm ready to be DONE!! 4 more days....4 more days!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Let's Have a Holly Bloggy Christmas this year!

Hi friends!  It's Caitlin (aka Ms. Preppy) from Ms. Preppy's Adventures in Primary and Polka Dots.  I am beyond excited to guest post here at one of my very favorite blogs! I'm also excited that Anna is allowing me to share a super fun project that I've been cooking up with Sarah from Kindergarten Korner.  We are organizing a Christmas gift exchange for our fabulous teacher blogger friends!  I know it's early in October...but both of us already have visions of sugar plums dancing in our heads.  I'm CRAZY in love with all things Christmas.  I just can't get enough of it.  The other day I was in a local home decor store and when I looked at the Halloween decorations I thought, "Man, it's way too early for pumpkins and ghosts!"  But I had no problem walking out of there with two new Christmas decorations.  {I told you.  Crazy!}  But I believe it's perfectly acceptable to be a smidgen crazy when you can turn your crazy into something good.  That's where Holly Bloggy Christmas comes in!

Here are all the dirty details!
- Holly Bloggy Christmas is a Christmas gift exchange for members of the teacher blogging community.  Participants will receive a gift from another teacher blogger AND a virtual stocking full of teacher resources from our sponsors!  It is free to participate, but sponsorship options are available and all donations will go to support TOYS FOR TOTS!
- Sign-ups begin NOW and will last until October 31st.
- In order to sign up, please send an email to  Copy and paste the questionnaire below into the body of the email and answer the questions.  We will send your answer to your secret pal, along with your address.  This information is TOP SECRET!
- Sarah and I will put participant’s names into a bowl and draw names to match you with your secret pal.  By November 10th, you will receive an email with the name of your secret pal and their answers to the questionnaire. 
- Get to crafting and/or shopping!  Be creative!  There is a $15 spending limit before postage.  Before you place your gift in the mail, snap a picture and email it to us.  On Christmas we will post all of the pictures of the super fabulous gifts everyone received!
- Send your wrapped gift in the mail (with delivery confirmation) by December 5th.  This way it has plenty of time to make it to your secret pal!
- Open your gift on Christmas morning!  NO PEEKING!  We will have a linky party for everyone to link up to a post about their gift and their wonderful secret pal!
Want to sponsor Holly Bloggy Christmas?
- Sponsorship is $5  All money will go towards TOYS FOR TOTS!
- Submit your donation via the paypal link in my sidebar.
- Sponsors have the opportunity to send us a product (unit, game, worksheet, etc.) that will be placed into a virtual stocking that all participants will receive on Christmas!  This is a great way to gain some exposure.  Please submit your product in PDF to
-Sponsors will also have their blog button or TpT/Teacher’s Notebook store button placed on the Holly Bloggy Christmas page of each of our blogs.
- For every $5 donation you make, you may submit one product.
- Email us at if you have questions.
Holly Bloggy Christmas Secret Pal Questionnaire
1. Full name or your “teacher” name (for monogramming!)
2. Mailing address
3. Email address
4. Blog/Website/Store (so your pal can learn a little more about you – but you don’t have to have a blog to participate)
5. Grade level
6. Favorite treat
7. Favorite colors
8. Not-so favorite colors
9. Give a little bit of information about yourself.  Married?  Kids?  Hobbies?
We hope you will all consider joining us in this fun Christmas exchange!  We already have several signed up, so I know it's going to be a good time!  Thanks again to Anna for allowing me to share about Holly Bloggy Christmas on her blog!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Calling Guest Bloggers!!!

Hey Sweet Friends! I feel so sorry for my poor neglected blog!!! The good news is that I only have 7 days left until I'm officially D-O-N-E with graduate school!! Wooohoooo!!! It's been a lot of work, but so worth it in the end!!

I would LOVE to have a few guest bloggers keep things going over here while I'm wrapping up grad school this week!! If you are interested in posting here, please send me an e-mail at!!

Can't wait to hear from you!!
P.S. Coming soon....

And then I promise I will get to work on a "Gobble, Gobble" adorable turkey themed packet & other Thanksgiving goodies!!! 

Happy Friday!!

Monday, October 3, 2011

A two year old, 21 first graders, and grad school, OH MY!!!

Y'all....My little teacher brain is spinning right now!!! Between running around playing trains and  imitating Buzz Lightyear with my son, teaching 21 first graders, going to one meeting after the other, typing up graduate school papers left and right....I.AM.SWAMPED!!! I only have 12 days until I finish graduate school... Can we say COUNTDOWN?? I am soooooo excited to dedicate more time here once I complete my Capstone presentation on October 15th {say a lil' prayer for me}! I have so many ideas to share and can't wait to say "bye-bye" to graduate school and "hello" to blogging!!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

And the lucky winner is......

Congrats to Mrs. Sienknecht!!! You just won a $25 OfficeMax gift card and 3 of my TpT products (of your choice)!!!!
E-mail me at to give me your mailing address and to let me know the products you would like from my TpT store!!!

A BIG thank you to everyone who participated in this giveaway!!! Y'all are the BEST!!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fall Math Journal Prompts and Centers!!

Happy Fall, Sweet Friends!! Just wanted you to know that I just posted my Fall Math Journal Prompts on TpT! You can check them out {HERE}! 

Also, check out my fall themed math and literacy center packets. Click on the pictures to go straight to my lil' TpT store!

Have you enter my Fabulous Fall Giveway to win an OfficeMax gift card and 3 of my TpT products? If not, go {HERE} now!! The contest ends on Wednesday!!

I hope everyone has a wonderful week!!

Graphics courtesy of Scrappin' Doodles.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fabulous Fall Giveaway with OfficeMax!!

I'm teaming up with OfficeMax to throw a FABULOUS FALL GIVEAWAY! You could win a $25.00 OfficeMax gift card AND 3 products of your choice from my TpT store!

There are 5 ways to enter! Please leave a comment for each one you have completed.

1. Follow OfficeMax on Facebook and tell me how you would spend the $25 gift card!
2. Follow my Facebook page!
3. Follow my blog!
4. Follow my TpT store!
5. Blog about this giveaway! 

 The contest will end on Wednesday, September 28th. I will use Random Generator to determine the lucky winner!!!

Thanks for playing with me!!! HAPPY FALL, Y'ALL!!!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Classroom Jobs

 Hey y'all! It's day thirty-one of school and I'm just now implementing a classroom job routine..HA!...I guess LATE is better than never, right?!! I've always had my students help me out, but decided to add a little structure to it!! Luckily, we've been learning about goods/services & consumers/producers, so introducing our job chart fit right in with our social studies standards!!

Everyone has a job each week! At the end of the week, I rotate the names. My kiddos are SUPER pumped up about their service to our classroom!! Love it!! Here is a picture of my classroom job chart.....

Here's a little description of each job:

Center Inspectors-make sure centers are put back in their place after center time.
Clean Up Crew -makes sure that there isn't trash on the floor and  puts trashcans outside of the door before dismissal for pick up service.
Pencil Helpers -make sure to collect unsharpened pencils at the end of each day.
Teacher's Assistant -helps me pass out papers, send things to the office, etc.
Library Helpers- make sure that the library is organized and our books are taken care of in the classroom.
Line Leader- *self explanatory* helps lead our line.
Door Holder-*self explanatory* holds the doors for us when needed.

Click {HERE} to download the classroom job labels!
 Graphics courtesy of Scrappin' Doodles.

Also, many of you have asked about my next set of math journal prompts! They will be ready to post this weekend!! Can't wait!!!


I want to give a BIG HUG and THANK YOU to.....


for giving me the Versatile award!! WHAT AN AWESOME HONOR!!
Thank you! Thank you!! Thank you!!!

Tomorrow I have a special giveaway planned for YOU! Stay tuned SWEET bloggy friends!!!!

Happy Last Day of Summer!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Weather Part 2 *finally*

I'm BACK and excited to share with y'all some more activities that made teaching weather ohhhh so much fun!!

*Homemade Rain Gauges*
These are super simple to make with your sweetie peas! Just ask for 2 liter bottle donations for a couple of weeks before you plan to do it with your whole class. 
 Cut the tops off of the bottles before you pass them out to your kiddos. The cut should be done just where the slope starts. Cut all the way around until the top of the bottle can be removed. Place the cut-off bottle top down into the bottom so it creates a funnel. Now, tape around the edges where the two bottle parts meet. Then pour a little  water into the bottle. It should be filled just past the bumpy bottom legs of the bottle. The top of the water will be your base point. Mark the top of the water line with a permanent marker. You can print out a paper ruler for your students to take home with them {here}.
Now, it would be really nice if it would just rain here in Watkinsville, Georgia so we could actually measure the rainfall..HA! Rain or shine, my students absolutely loved making their own rain gauge! Maybe...just rain dance will work this week!!!

*Rain Poem Fun*
In the writing center, we wrote "Rain Poems". This activity reinforced the color words we've been learning about to help us describe things in our writing. I used the umbrella die cut at my school & scrapbooking paper to make the umbrellas. The little girl was also made with a die cut at my school. If you don't have these die cuts available at your school, I would just let your students draw them on their own picture!
Click {here} to download the Rain Poem writing paper!

*Weather Fun Math and Literacy Centers*
To integrate our weather theme into center time, I created Weather Fun Math and Literacy centers! My first graders loved working on them!!! You can get your copy at my lil' TpT store {HERE}!!  It's on sale for 20% off TODAY!!
Here's a sneak peek of everything you'll get in the packet!!

We are HUGE fans of reading the room in my classroom. Here's a weather themed Read the Room that focuses on /ai/ and /ay/ sounds for YOU. Click on the picture to download it!

I hope everyone is enjoying this beautiful Sunday afternoon!! I'm loving the crispy cool Fall weather we're having here....can't wait for Parker to wake up from his nap so we can go play outside again!!!
Speaking of my Parker...check out these pictures of him playing while I worked in my classroom yesterday! At one point, I looked over and all I could see were his little legs poking out of the cardboard box...didn't get the camera in time...dang it!!  Too cute!!!